Day 1

It's Day 1 and this is what paying $10,000 starts you with ($10000 in chips). Today, this stack is up against nearly 2160 exactly like it - it's going to be a brutal battle!


Things have changed now that this is such a large event - no spectators are allowed in until much later in the day, after a few rounds have gone by and the room is not so crowded. All we can do is stand at one of the doors and peer into the room. Right is a typical view. It is surprisingly quiet. MZ is starting at Table 144, Seat 4. He's somewhat visible from the one door way. Can you find him in the shot above?


This is pretty much the seen for the first two hours.......

Made it to the end of Round 1!!! Stack is at about $8800.  Time for a break, and then back for another two hour round. There are 6 two hour rounds to get through today.
The scene an hour into Round 2 looks just like Round 1 ...... Except now, the sunglasses are on! Still at Table 144. The table is mostly armatures, no big names, so MZ can control the table.

The sunglasses must have helped! At the end of Round 2, the stack is up to just over $19,000!

By the diner break, end of Round 3, the stack is at $26,250. There are 1750 stacks left, and according to, 26,250 is one of the biggest!


Dinner breaks over, and MZ is feeling good...On to Round 4.



After the dinner break, the crowds thinned A LOT and spectators were finally allowed in, giving us a chance to see some of the action!







Cardplayer Magazine is the official sponsor for the tourney. They have these guys that go around looking to see who has the big stacks. This is one of those guys.

Part way into Round 4, they noticed Mike and his name is now one of the ones 'to watch' - he's in the list they post, of chip leaders. At the end of Round 4, they had MZ 22nd in the list. There are about 1400 players remaining. The leader at this time is Dan Negreanu, whose head and stack is seen below.

Mike and his $26,000 stack spend the two hours of Round 4 peaking at $30,000 and ending at $28,350.

On to Round 5...

Round 5 was a grueling two hours, but the stack held up, ending at $24,825. With only two hours left tonight, MZ's a bit tired, but still on his game.


 ...and what a game it was! That's it - Day 1 is finished, after 12 long, tedious hours of play. And MZ came through it with stack to spare! The average stack size is $25,264 and he's at $31,850. In a Day 1 exit interview, MZ rated his play as 8 out of 10. He's going to sleep happy tonight.